The hype with Elon Musk’s Neuralink is on the rise. Enthusiasts and observers are excited as details of the project have been slowly shared with the public in the past few weeks. From being reportedly enabling users to directly listen to music to helping cure a variety of mental illnesses such as depression and addiction, it is understandable that all eyes are on the company.
Even though the supposed ‘brain chip’ is yet to be tested on humans, experts have raised their concerns with regard to its susceptibility to a data breach conducted by hackers.
Neuralink’s brain chip is a form of a brain-computer interface (BCI). Modern-day computing BCI acquires brain signals which are then analyzed and translated to a series of commands that are later fed to an output device that will accomplish the task.
Better protect yourself
According to a report on the Daily Mail, there is a possibility that hackers can gain illegal access to a user’s thoughts and memories, which in return, can be used by hackers to commence with their digital attacks. They speculate that hackers can hijack the vulnerable channel between the BCI and the brain which can lead to illegal acquisition of sensitive data traveling through the medium in the form of neural signals.
They fear that it may have devastating repercussions to the person using the BCI hacked by malevolent individuals – even raising the possibility of hackers having the ability to eliminate current skills or even alter memories.
They warn that the damage will not only lie in how the brain works but can also wreak physical harm.
However, they have suggested that this can be easily prevented by devising a multi-layered security principle in crafting CBIs. This includes the use of antivirus software (yes like the ones on your personal computer) to encryption processes (i.e. two-way authentication, etc.).
The company has been working on its brain chip since 2016 and is expected to share updates of its progress in late August.